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Grand Theft in Florida is defined as the knowing and unlawful taking, obtaining, use, or attempts to use or take another’s property (valued at more than $300) coupled with the intent to temporarily or permanently deprive the other’s right to the property or to appropriate the property to his own use or the use of another.
 
Basically, if you take, or try to take, property that does not belong to you, you could find yourself charged with Grand Theft in Florida.

Penalties for a Grand Theft Charge

The penalties for Grand Theft in Florida vary depending on the value of what was taken and whether you have previously been convicted of theft.

If the value of the property taken is less than $20,000 but more than $300, you will be charged with a third degree felony punishable by:
  1. Up to five years in State Prison.
  2. Up to five years of supervised probation.
  3. Up to a $5,000 fine
If the value of the property taken is more than $100,000, you will be charged with a first degree felony punishable by:
  1. Up to fifteen years in State Prison.
  2. Up to fifteen years of supervised probation.
  3. Up to a $10,000 fine

If the value of the property taken is less than $100,000 but more than $20,000, you will be charged with a second degree felony punishable by:
  1. Up to thirty years in State Prison.
  2. Up to thirty years of supervised probation.
  3. Up to a $10,000 fine
Additionally, Grand Theft is conisdered a crime of dishonesty and there are several other potential and collateral consequences to a Grand Theft conviction including difficulty finding employment especially if handing money is required.

Defenses to a Grand Theft Charge

In addition to factual defenses that would be raised at trial to show reasonable doubt as to the crime alleged, some common defenses to a Grand Theft charge in Florida include:

You did not knowingly take the property
The law requires that you “knowingly” take property that does not belong to you. If the alleged theft was simply a misunderstanding or if you did not knowingly take the property, you may have an affirmative defense to the Grand Theft charge.

You had a right to take the property
You can’t steal property that belongs to you. A very specific requirement of the Florida Grand Theft law is that the property allegedly taken did not belong to you and that it was unlawful for you to take it.
 
If the property allegedly taken belonged to you and you had a right to it, you may have an affirmative defense to the Grand Theft charge.

Contact Orlando Criminal Defense Attorney Chris Kaigle if you’ve been charged with Grand Theft in Florida!
(407) 545-6416